The report was issued as part of the EnviSuM ( (Environmental Impact of Low Emission Shipping: Measurements and Modelling Strategies) project, that looks into clean shipping solutions from both a technical and socio-economic viewpoint.
The report underlines that the starting point for supplying LNG as a marine fuel is construction of large-scale import terminals. In general, these terminals are built to import gas to national gas networks and they must be expanded to include small scale reload facilities for reload of smaller LNG tankers or LNG bunkering vessels and/or LNG trucks.
However, for a developed infrastructure, more LNG terminals or storage facilities will be needed. These small-scale and medium-scale intermediary terminals will be centered within ports; they can be onshore in the form of tanks or offshore e.g. as vessels.
Furthermore, small-scale LNG liquefaction plants fed from national gas grids could be seen as part of these intermediary LNG terminals. Currently the lack of infrastructure for alternative fuels is a major obstacle for development of alternative-fueled maritime transport.
In order to overcome this need, the European Commission, by means of Directive 2014/94/EU, has mandated the deployment of an appropriate alternative fuels infrastructure’s coverage.
To this purpose, the EU Member States should define national targets and objectives so as to encourage the circulation of AFVs, in particular for electric (Article 4), hydrogen (on a voluntary basis, Article 5) and natural gas (Article 6) powered vehicles.
Member States are requested to ensure “that an appropriate number of refueling points for LNG are put in place at maritime ports, to enable LNG inland waterway vessels or seagoing ships to circulate throughout the TEN-T Core Network by 31 December 2025” (Article 6(1)). In both cases, the designation of maritime and inland ports which are going to provide access to refueling points for LNG has to “take into consideration actual market needs” (Article 6(3)).
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